Vital point at Old Trafford for Firsts

 

Top v second in the Premiership ended goalless and a draw was probably a better result for league leaders and visitors Mellor than home side Old Trafford. In an exciting game Old Trafford had the better chances and might have won. But Mellor defended stoutly and keeper Gavin Thornley made a string of good saves. The draw keeps Mellor six points clear at the top of the Premiership, although Whalley Range could reduce that to one point if they win their two games in hand. With eight games left Mellor need to hold their nerve to win the title for the first time in the club's history. Old Trafford's first threat came on five miniutes as Ben Beer's clearing header was volleyed back just over the bar. Craig Frisby headed against the Old Trafford crossbar on 21 minutes from a Mark Oldham free kick. Then Barry Dalby reached the byline only to see his cross go too high for Frisby's head. Two minutes later the home side should have scored with a close range header from a corner that went just wide. On 38 minutes Barry Dalby, who had a good match, missed a very good chance for Mellor from six yards, arriving onto the ball in the wrong stride to make telling contact. On 42 minutes Gav Thornley had to plunge to his right to parry a close range shot and an Old Trafford forward drove the loose ball narrowly wide. Just before the break the Old Trafford keeper parried a rasping shot from Mellor's Mike Sharpe. After the interval, the home side upped the tempo and Mellor were on the back foot for much of the second half. Thornley made his second vital save on 56 minutes, blocking an eight yarder with his legs. Several times Mellor defenders had to fling themselves full length to block shots. On 59 minutes Liam Totterdell replaced Luke Jubb and had to wait only three minutes for a golden chance to win the match but his shot was off target in a one-on-one with the keeper. Thornley was the busier glove man however and made another excellent stop on 65 minutes. Rob White replaced the exhausted Craig Fairfield on 80 minutes and two minutes later the home side missed a sitter from six yards. Dave Moss replaced Paul Swann with two minutes left. But there was late drama as Totterdell had the ball in the net in the last minute only for referee Mark Verigotta, who had a terrific game, to blow for an infringement. Mark Oldham was Mellor's Man of the Match with Thornley running him close.

Barry Dalby cannot connect from six yards out for Mellor's best chance

Sharpe-shooter. Mike Sharpe's piledriver is parried

Tott of the Pots. But this time Liam Totterdell is off target in a one-on-one

After last week's cup triumph, the Seconds travelled to mid table Burnage and came away with a disappointing 1-1 draw which sees Rochdalians replace them as Division A leaders. The game was remarkable only for a 70 yard goal scored by Mellor's Matt Jamieson. The Thirds were also away at Bridge Colts, new to the league, and lost 1-3. Steve Gannon, happily back from a long term injury, scored Mellor's goal. The Fourths went down 3-4 away at Hooley Bridge. Maciek Sobiegoraj, Danny Roberts and Adam Axford were on target. Mellor recovered from going 2-0 down in the opening five minutes to level at 2-2 but the home side went 4-2 up before Mellor narrowed the gap.

 

 

 

 

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PIC 1 Gav Thornley...fine saves for the Firsts
PIC 2 Matt Jamieson scored from 70 yards for the Seconds

PIC 3 Steve Gannon...back among the goals for the Thirds

PIC 4 Adam Axford...scored for the Fourths